Thowback on mobility news during 2020
In our society, our modes of travel depend on various factors such as the environment in which we live (in the city, in the country), current events (covid) and our lifestyle.
The year 2020 has been marked by numerous innovations in mobility and by the extraordinary crisis we are still going through.
To kick off the year 2021, we have summarized for you the various innovations of 2020 on the theme of mobility around the world.
What's new on roads
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Pedal more simply
In the midst of the transition to a smoother mobility, cities like Lyon have made self-service bicycles available to their residents to get around. Vélo’v was one of the very first self-service bicycle rental systems. In 2018, 8.5 million Vélo’v trips were made in Lyon.
In February 2020, Vélo’v decided to innovate by offering the first electric self-service bicycles, in order to climb the slopes of the Croix-Rousse without difficulty or to get around more quickly. The Vélo’v battery works like a “normal” external battery and can even be used to recharge a smartphone.
Moving around without a driver
The major transportation players have prepared for the arrival of autonomous buses in order to increase public transportation without drivers. For the moment, they are only just beginning, but tests have already taken place: Navya, for example, had already done so on the roads of Lyon in 2015.
For the moment in France, we are a long way from buses capable of transporting a dozen people without a driver, but this technology is already very real in Japan, where the first autonomous bus was launched on November 26, 2020 in Ibaraki Prefecture.
A new technological feat at Lyon Airport
At Lyon airport, no more stress to find a parking space nor waste of time and effort walking miles loaded with suitcases because the only free space was at the other end of the parking lot. It is now Stan, a robot that parks the passengers’ cars, 50% more spaces saved for the airport and a reduction in the CO2 emissions of the cars since they no longer have to circulate in the parking lots. For travelers, this is an undeniable gain in time and comfort.
Mobility also happens in the air
Moving over road traffic
After imagining them as futuristic innovations, flying cars took off in 2020.
CityAirBus, the prototype flying cab of the European company Airbus continues to evolve, slowly but surely. The 8-meter-long vehicle, proud of its four battery-powered double rotors, should eventually be able to carry four passengers at a speed of 120 km/h but with a range of 15 minutes.
Intended to replace part of the road traffic and thus relieve traffic congestion in congested city areas, the CityAirbus could cause a sensation and enter service on urban routes during the 2024 Paris Olympic Games between Roissy-Disneyland Paris and Roissy-Saint-Denis.
Each country has its own model: South Korea’s Hyundai and Uber are planning to transport passengers in the air by 2023.
The future of flying cabs seems bright. Reality would then catch up with fiction, that of the film “the Fifth Element” imagined by Luc Besson and released in 1997.
A lot of turbulence since Covid-19
The current crisis is an opportunity to change mobility habits and work methods. According to a study conducted by the National Association of HR Directors (2019), 85% of HR directors surveyed consider the sustainable development of teleworking in their company as desirable. If we consider this evolution in the long term, telework has a real potential for development in the coming years. Moreover, the global pandemic has revealed the extent to which the pollution of our cities depends on our travel and how much this pollution has been reduced during containment.
A study published in Nature Climate Change (2020) revealed that France has seen a considerable 34% decrease in CO2 emissions during confinement. Global emissions from road traffic have decreased by 36%. These results show that a change in mobility behavior can help preserve the environment.
Mobility is in constant evolution towards a sustainable and smoother mobility. Teleworking is indeed one of the solutions for rethinking mobility, which is at the center of a general awareness of the population. However, telecommuting cannot replace all business or daily life travel. In order to make journeys in rural areas more fluid and to relieve congestion in increasingly popular urban areas, new technologies, each more innovative than the last, are shaping the world of tomorrow.
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